Are 13" MBPs powerful enough for 4K monitors?

Hi all,

With both my wife and myself working from home these days, we want — or, rather, need :wink: — to set up a second workstation. A key question is which monitor we should buy. Our preference is a 27" 4K screen.

This setup must work well with a recent-model 13" MacBook Pro (USB-C ports), however. According to Apple’s website, current 13" MacBook Pro support up to two 4K monitors. Are they powerful enough to drive them efficiently, though, i.e., without noticable lag or constantly spinning fans, reduced refresh rates, flickering, etc.?

Do any of you have any experience with running a 13" MBP with a 4K display?

Our short list for such displays currently includes the HP Z27 (Wirecutter’s recommendation), the LG 27UK650-W (rtings’ recommendation) and the NEC EA271U (because we’ve been very happy with our PA242W for years).

The main usage includes UX/UI/screen design, so the setup must be performant enough for this purpose.

Thank you so much for any advice to sort out this gear conundrum!

One 4k runs fine on each of our late 2017 MBPs.

Don’t know about 2.

5K didn’t work and had to exchange them for 4k

Thanks, @david_tuma!

I just want to run a single 4k monitor with that MBP, so I’ll go ahead and order one, then. :slight_smile: